Composers and Lyricists : Various artistes
Dibakar Banerjee’s propensity to experiment with his film’s music is well-established. He doesn’t stick to one thing, as we’ve heard in Oye Lucky Lucky Oye and Love Sex Aur Dhokha. In his latest, Detective Byomkesh Bakshy (DBB), the director once again takes the unconventional path. DBB’s first stroke of novelty is juxtaposing an explosive indie soundtrack with the ’40s Calcutta, with all the noir and pulp elements thrown in.
It sounds like the perfect post-modern recipe and doesn’t disappoint. The album makes a terrific start with Madboy/Mink’s Calcutta kiss (a reworked version of a track from their first album All Ball), a trippy, electro-cabaret track that sets the tone for a deliciously dark universe involving a detective, fighter planes, mysterious “Chinamen” and femme fatales. Saba Azad is aptly saucy as the lead vocalist.
The song revisits old disco beats with pin-sharp production. The lyrics are fun, with just the right sounding words, “Woh sala bola, yeh le charas ka tola, Chhod de kurta jhola bhai lagta hai tu bhola,” which puts the Bengali and the detective together.
The infectious Bach ke Bakshy, composed by Sneha Khanwalkar, is an electronica-based song, with a dash of rap, some intriguing Punjabi phrases thrown in, a gothic chorus and a whispering female voice. This one grows on you and how. Byomkesh in love could be one of those easy listening, ethnic fusion tracks that blend electronic beats with Hindustani classical but for the title, and its context.
The lyrics, “Jaao jaao, mujhe na bolo, sautan ke sang raho,” further hint at the dynamics between Byomkesh-Satyavati (his wife) and Ajit (his sidekick). The retro trip continues with Jaanam, written and sung by Peter Cat Recording Co. frontman Suryakant Sawhney. With its waltz-like groove, it’s like a Hemant Kumar-oldie, reprised by an intoxicated voice in a dark and heavy sort of a way.
Chase in Chinatown is that bad-ass heavy bass music you’ve heard in the trailers along with the visuals of grungy bylanes and hand-pulled rickshaws of Calcutta. Created by Vyshnav Balasubramaniam, Sandeep Madhavan, Manas Ullas, it is a hypnotic blend of hard rock, R&B and electronica. The next, Love’s a Bitch by Delhi band The Joint Family, is the shocker; it’s a death metal track, with full-throttled growling, and that ominous hook of the electric guitar.
Detective Byomkesh Bakshy is a clutter-breaking album. Banerjee has intelligently used India’s growing indie musical talent in what is a mainstream Bollywood movie.